Tiger Woods fires third-round 66, remains 5 strokes back in BMW

NEWTOWN SQUARE, Pa. -- Tiger Woods hit 16 greens in regulation, didn't make a bogey and shot 66 on Saturday -- all reasons for him to feel good about his game.

But not this week and not at Aronimink Golf Club.

The venerable Philadelphia course has been turned into a virtual pitch and putt by the best players in the world, the product of wider-than-normal fairways and a course softened by an abundance of rain at the BMW Championship.

"It was frustrating because I hit the ball well enough to shoot a low score, and I got off to a quick start, birdieing the first two," Woods said. "And [caddie] Joey [LaCava] was tripping in my ear to stay patient out there because I was getting a little hot.

"I was looking up on the board, and everyone seemed like they were 3 under through eight, 5 under through nine. I was only 2 under, and I wasn't doing much."

It was a similar story Friday, when Woods turned a good round into even-par 70. There's nothing wrong with 66, but the scoring average was just over 67. A 62, two 63s and three 64s were among those in contention.

With a dubious weather forecast for Sunday, Woods will enter the final round 5 strokes back of leader Justin Rose. After starting the day in a tie for 12th, Woods is tied for 11th, with the likes of Rory McIlroy, Tommy Fleetwood, Rickie Fowler and Francesco Molinari ahead of him.

For 54 holes, Woods is at 198, 12 under par. For perspective, he has shot 198 or better through three rounds 16 times in his career and was never worse than second place. Through three rounds, he has missed just eight of 54 greens.

But Aronimink has turned into a style that does not suit him: a birdie fest that requires making a ton of putts. Woods ranks second in the field this week in strokes gained and approach to the green but just 43rd in putting. He needed 30 putts on Saturday.

"I'm going to have to shoot one of those 61s or 62s just to have a chance," Woods said. "The golf course is soft. Everyone is making birdies. You can be aggressive. I got to take a run at it, whether it's tomorrow or Monday."

Play was delayed Saturday for more than three hours after 2½ inches of rain fell overnight. More rain is in the forecast for Sunday, and tee times have been moved to 7 a.m.

The PGA Tour could decide to shorten the event to 54 holes, though that is unlikely. It has had just three 54-hole events in the past eight years.

The PGA Tour has an off week coming up prior to the Tour Championship.